International Student Admissions

Please read the information below to learn about eligibility requirements and application materials before you apply to a graduate program.

Eligibility Requirements

In general, you need to have accomplished the following in order to be considered for admission:

  • Completed a four-year undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited institution or one with equivalent recognition.
  • Achieved a 2.75 grade point average on a 4.00 scale, or the equivalent.

NIU only recognizes degrees awarded by regionally accredited institutions or foreign institutions with equivalent recognition. For example, we recognize degrees from institutions in India that are recognized by the University Grants Commission (UGC), designated by the UGC as deemed to be a university, or designated as an Institute of National Importance as possessing the equivalent to regional accreditation.

If You Received a Three-year Degree

If you received a three-year degree awarded through the Bologna process in Europe or a three-year Bachelor of Commerce or Bachelor of Business Administration awarded in India, you are eligible to apply (provided you are seeking admission to the MBA or OMIS program).

If you have a three-year BCOM or BBA from India, you must have received the degree from an institution that is accredited by the National Assessment and Accreditation Council with a grade of A or better (or the equivalent) at the time of award.

If you received a three-year degree from another institution, you must ask your intended program for permission to apply. Review your graduate program's information page to find contact information. The program office will inform the Graduate School of its decision.

Application Materials

In general, you may follow the information provided on the application materials page when preparing to apply. Additional information and requirements are below.


When you apply, you must upload transcripts and proof of degree (diploma, diploma supplement, etc.) attested by an appropriate school official, as well as certified English language translations.

If you're from India or Pakistan, you must upload individual marksheets rather than transcripts, as well as degree certificates (if available), all attested by the principal, controller of exams, registrar or USIEF.

If you're admitted, you'll need to submit hard copies of all transcripts, marksheets and proof of degree.

Test Scores

In addition to test scores required by your intended program, you must submit a TOEFL or IELTS score unless you meet one of the following criteria:

  • You're seeking admission to the Intensive English Program at ELS DeKalb.
  • You completed or will complete a baccalaureate or higher degree from an institution in one of these countries (listed).

Please note the following regarding test scores:

  • NIU requires an 80 (TOEFL), 6.5 (IELTS) or 53 (PTE Academic).
  • When preparing your score report for upload, be sure that your name and all scores are legible.
  • If you're admitted, you must have your test score sent to NIU from the testing center. When having your TOEFL score sent, use institution code 1559. NIU does not require department codes; neither does the testing center.


Though not required, you may upload a copy of your passport during the application process. A passport is required to be issued an I-20, but not for admission purposes.

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Temporary Acceptance of Duolingo English Test due to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

If you're affected by testing center closures due to the COVID-19 outbreak, you can submit a Duolingo English test instead of an in-person TOEFL, IELTS or PTE English proficiency exam. Read frequently asked questions about the Duolingo English test.

If applying for spring 2022, summer 2022 or fall 2022 you must take the test before May 1, 2022.

  • Cost: $49 (USD).
  • Time to complete: About 45 minutes.
  • What you need: Computer with camera, audio and reliable internet. Passport, driver's license, or national or state ID.
  • Format: Exam (speaking, reading, writing and listening exercises) and interview (responding to prompts in 30-90 seconds).
  • Results: You must score at least 105 for admission purposes. You'll receive results within a few days.

A few days after you take the exam, you'll receive an email with a link to send your score to NIU. If you submit a Duolingo score, you'll be placed into English 453, a free professional writing course at NIU. If you don't want to take the course, you can have the requirement waived by passing an essay exam during orientation week.

Prepare for Duolingo English Test

Take Duolingo English Test or Practice Exam

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Fax: 815-753-6366

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